Faith, Family, & Focaccia

A faith and culture Mommy blog, because real life gets all mixed together like that.

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If…a vision of a more fun world

Today I was speaking with a colleague about the crazy things our kids say, and how it gives such a fascinating glimpse into their lives. That thought stayed with me through the day, and eventually simmered over into a poem about my son’s crazy, wonderful, inspiring internal world.

If …


If the world really worked as my son thinks it should

… there would be lots more chocolate

… and no one would have to wake up early

… and he could play with guns and explosives

…because they would be utterly safe but still make big bangs.

If the world really worked as my son thinks it should

… toys would be unlimited and free

… and so would smiles

… and no one would be too poor or too rich

… because every one would have “middle money.”

If the world really worked as my son thinks it should

… ambulances would be just for playing in

… because no one would ever get hurt

… but if they did, they could have a Disney band-aid

… even with no visible boo-boo.

If the world really worked as my son thinks it should

… there would be answers to every question

… and the answers would change if he didn’t like them

… and never would distractions, or exhaustion, get in the way of a thirty second story

…stretched over forty minutes.

If the world really worked as my son thinks it should

… little boys could run around naked all the time

… and Mommies would be just as happy in their skin

… because the squishy parts are best for cuddling

… and jiggly arms make awesome toys.

If the world really worked as my son thinks it should

… hugs would be the most precious currency

… and everyone would give them generously

… and every problem could be fixed by “I’m sorry”

… or at least a cuddle and a book.

If the world really worked as my son thinks it should

… there would be less pain

… and more play

… and everyone would understand that we are all happier

… when we make each other whole.


More than Seven Reasons to Celebrate

Princess Imagination on her last birthday... it feels like just yesterday.

Princess Imagination on her last birthday… it feels like just yesterday.

Today Princess Imagination turns seven years old. She has been talking about and planning this day for months. I, on the other hand, don’t quite feel ready.

This post, however, is not about my ambivalence about my daughter’s fast progress through childhood. It is about the question of how to celebrate this milestone in her journey. In the context of her intense discussion of her upcoming birthday I had plenty of reminders about this opportunity, and since writing is the way I process my challenges and joys, it was obvious to me that I wanted to write something.

I took a few stabs at something that would be appropriately expressive of my huge pride at being her mother.

I tried the format of a letter telling her what I wanted her to see in herself.

I tried an explanatory list of “seven” amazing things I see in her – one for each year.

But none of these formats were quite clicking. They felt forced.

And then I re-read a poem that she had spontaneously inspired through her play a few months ago. It is just a sensory description of a common place childhood moment, but that is what makes it feel right to me in this context.

Celebrating her childhood is not about formulas, or lists, or deep, expressive analysis.

It is about the amazing joy of watching her live ordinary moments, and rediscovering simple joy in that observation.





Bright yellow

like a little globe of sunlight

captured in a ball of childhood delight

floating for the benefit of her bright eyes.

Smooth and soft

not burning as the touch of sun drops should

but pulsing


dancing away

from playful fingertips.

It tastes like laughter

filling up her mouth with bubbling joy,

sweet salivation wetting lips

that part in breathless expectation

Her tiny nostrils flare

as dust and cornstarch

beaten from the air by flailing arms and flying fingers

tickle her delicate nose, tempting a sneeze

to join the riotous sounds of celebration

giggles and squeals

weaving a complicated dance

between bright, one-syllable commands



“get it!”

But then the sharp report


and for one frozen second


air itself contracts to mourn the loss

– – –

but then the swirling, active fun refills the space

so lately occupied by her little drop of sun…

the next balloon is pink.